John Cabot 1490S, Sailed to North America

John Cabot 1490S, Sailed to North America

Colonial America

Founding of English Colonies

John Cabot 1490s, sailed to North America

1588 Spanish Armada defeated, England free to explore and settle in the New World

Three Types of Colonies:

Joint-stock Company Colony

Royal or Crown Colony

Proprietary Colony

Joint-stock Company Colony: requires a charter, formed by stockholders, board of directors set policy, colonial governor appointed

Royal or Crown Colony: colonial government answers to the King (who enforces laws). However, in Virginia, local issues overseen by the House of Burgesses (creates laws).

Proprietary Colony: one person owns an entire colony

Example-Maryland owned by Sir George Calvert, who encouraged religious tolerance and civil relationships with Native Americans

Virginia Company of London

Purpose was to make a profit

Charter from James I

1607 Jamestown

Opportunity to start a new life

People of all backgrounds/religions welcome

“Dumping ground” for undesirables


Mosquitoes, Native Americans, disease and starvation

John Smith holds colony together

Economically colony was a financial disaster

Unskilled workers sent to colony

Most in search of gold

1610 colony briefly abandoned

1613 begins to rebound:

Tobacco hybrid developed by John Rolfe

Extremely resilient, becomes cash crop of Virginia

1618 50,000 pounds

1627 500,000 pounds

1700 30,000,000 pounds

1776 100,000,000 pounds

1620s women recruited

Seamstresses, cooks, aid in population growth

1622 Native Americans attack, 1/3 of Jamestown population slaughtered

Indentured servants: individuals held by contract to provide labor for a span of 4-7 years in exchange for room and board, freedom and social mobility

New England- Plymouth

Settled for religious reasons

In England, Henry VIII appointed the head of the Church of England

Puritans- wanted to purify the church

Separatists- wanted to separate from the church

At first traveled to Holland, because the country was accepting of their beliefs

Then requested permission to settle in Virginia

November 1620

Mayflower embarks for Americas

67 travelers (35 separatists) believed they were Pilgrims (travelers for religious reasons)

Land in Cape Cod, Massachusetts (outside of Virginia Company Charter)

Mayflower Compact- document that established democratic rule within the community that prevented one person or group from wielding too much power or influence





Democratic government

Better relations with Native Americans

Massachusetts Bay Colony


More puritans travel to MA and settle north of Plymouth

Interests were to establish religious society, self-govern, material success

Began trading with West Indies

Theocracy- religion tied to government

Intolerant toward other groups/ individuals: Salem Witch trials

Education- key to indoctrinate values from generation to generation


Harvard established to train ministers

Puritan Ethic

Based on John Calvin

Man was born with original sin

Can be saved by the grace of God

Predestination- a person’s fate predetermined


Political leaders were also church leaders

Moral leaders

Financially successful

Key Characteristics/ Values

Hard work, temperance, thriftiness, moderation

Puritan ethic connected to capitalism

New England began shipping timber to England and other colonies

For shipbuilding, fishing, building homes

New York-New Netherland

Settled by Dutch


England takes over; Charles II gave land to brother James, the Duke of York




George Fox 1624-1691

“Man’s love for God can best be shown for man’s love for man.”

Salvation for all people

Believed they possessed the “inner light”

They believed they could hear God’s voice

Preached equality

Refused to take oath to king, only to God

Settled in NJ and PA

Pennsylvania- “Penn’s Woods”

Proprietary Colony

William Penn


Penn traveled to colony and laid plans for Philadelphia


9,000 people residing in the city

Politically successful

Religious refuge for Mennonites, Huguenots, Irish Catholics

Diverse population

New Jersey

Sit George Carteret and Sir John Berkeley


Berkeley sells West Jersey to Quakers


Penn bought East Jersey


East and West united

Farms produced

Wheat, rye corn

Sold to southern and New England colonies

Exported to Europe and West Indies


George Calvert (Lord Baltimore)

Established first proprietary colony

He was Roman Catholic


Maryland Toleration Act

Religious freedom for all Christians

The Carolinas

Charles II gave land to eight nobles, including William Berkeley (governor of Virginia

Carolina named after Charles

Belong to Church of England, but welcomed all religions

Fundamental Constitution of Carolinas

Designed by English political philosopher John Locke

Society based on class status

Nobles at the top

Three Distinct Areas:

Mountainous Highlands- western boundary, Appalachian Mountains

Piedmont- base of the highlands, between mountains and sea level

Tidewater- flat coastal plain

Cash Crops and Plantation System

Aristocratic landowners controlled government

Owned huge plantations

Indigo, rice, tobacco, cotton


Carolina divided into two parts; each had own government

North Carolina

Most settlers came from other colonies in New England and Virginia

South Carolina

Most settlers came from England

Some owned plantations on West Indies

Some Protestant refugees from France



Separated from South Carolina

James Oglethorpe (leader of a group of proprietors

Wanted to provide a place where people imprisoned for debt could make a new start

Provided a barrier against Spanish Florida

Became haven for poor shopkeepers and artisans from England and Scotland

Roman Catholics banned

Economic Life in the Colonies

Sir Walter Raleigh- “Whoever commands the trade of the world commands the riches of the world and consequently the world itself.”

Mercantilism- an economic system prevalent in Europe after the Middle Ages in which each nation attempted to sell more than it bought in order to increase its supply of gold

Colonies provided: precious metals, lumber, cotton, wool


Supplied constant supply of cheap labor

Planter had complete control over workforce

Life of a Slave

Middle Passage- from Africa to America

Men, women, children crammed below deck of slave ships

Chained to each other

1/3 died from heat and disease


Worked in fields, as carpenters, blacksmiths, barrel makers, sailors

Lacked legal rights

Often separated from family

Slave Codes maintained control over slaves

Navigation Acts: colonist traded only with England

Colonial merchants were allowed to ship goods only on colonial or English vessels

¾ of crew had to be colonial or English sailors

An attempt to control/ compete with Dutch merchants

Enumerated commodities were goods that could only be shipped to England:

Sugar, cotton, indigo, ginger, tobacco, wood, rice, naval supplies

Colonists could only import English products or products that went through England, except for slaves, wine, horses, salt

Impact of navigation acts:

English government granted bonuses

Colonists protected by British forces (Army, Navy)

Some colonists lost profits through trade restrictions

Eliminated competition

Triangular Trade:

New England received slaves and molasses for rum

Rum and other raw materials went to Africa

Africa sent slaves

British West Indies could not meet demands for molasses

New England imported molasses from French, Spanish, and Dutch West Indies

British profits are reduced

Molasses Act of 1733

British imposed a stiff tax on all molasses or rum imported from other areas

New England ignored the law